Friday 14 February 2014

Chosen and beloved

The other day we reflected on Call and Choice as alternative frameworks for living, and on Choice as the contemporary (Western) cultural default. This morning, suddenly, Chosen, Elect, Beloved sprang into meaning. Bulchand speaking so warmly of God calling us his chosen, his beloved. Chosen before being formed in the womb (Jeremiah). And the young salesian who says to another: I am happy. If one day I find myself unhappy, I will go, without too much fuss. And years ago, a friend telling me: I am in love, and I find it dishonest to remain with my husband, because I do not love him. I do not want to say with him merely because it's convenient to do so, merely because of social pressures. And in the dialogue that ensued, the point that fidelity is not to our feelings, however beautiful and imperative, but to persons, and that persons - are mysteries, much more than they seem, simply because ultimately rooted in the Mystery and Person that is God. So give yourself a chance: don't talk of fidelity to a feeling; be faithful to the person to whom you have given your word. And to us, consecrated celibates: is it really possible to say: If one day I find myself unhappy, I will go without too much fuss? I cannot imagine someone saying that on the day of his wedding. I cannot imagine a married person saying that. It is a recipe for disaster. No guarantee of fidelity, it is true, except the One Guarantee, "He who has called me is faithful." But to keep a door open like that - disastrous.

Paul's passion. "I live, no not I, but Christ my Lord lives in me." (Gal 2:20) "I count everything as rubbish for the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord." (Phil 3:8) "O the length and the breadth and the height and the depth of the love of Christ." (Eph 3:18) "Who can separate us from the love of Christ?" (Rom 8:35)

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